Monday, April 12, 2010

Light Momentary Affliction

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is 
being renewed day by day.  For this light momentary affliction is preparing 
for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the 
things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that 
are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18

I have not had the best day in the world.  I took a long nap yesterday afternoon.  It was much needed and Underdog commanded me to.  But it did just exactly what I was afraid it would do. . .it caused me not to sleep well last night.  I tossed an turned from about 11pm to 3am.  I finally got up and went down stairs.  I should have done my Bible study for the day but I foolishly spent my time doing other things so my focus was off today.  

I left a note for my kids this morning to get the day started quietly and let me sleep.  No one saw it. So I woke up to alot of loud children.  They felt so bad when they realized the note was there and tried to make it up to me.  Sweet kids.  They do not deserve to have me as a mom.  

One of my children woke up needing a nap already for the day.  I can't figure out if she's teething or is suspect that something is up.  She's been very clingy today.  I was honestly glad to put her down for her afternoon nap.  The other child that was giving me fits (literally) has taken to screaming over not getting his way, not getting help, you name it. . .he screams.  So I told him that when he screams today I was going to put him in the bath tub until he was ready to come out and not scream.  He spent more time in the bath tub this morning than he did playing.  (By the way, that is a drive bath tub.  Dry bath tubs are cold and not fun to be in.)  Another child decided that his sin wasn't as great as mine and used an opportunity to beat me over the head with a failure of mine.  All of this to take the focus on his sin.  I just about lost it.  I am so hormonal and cry at the drop of a hat these days.  His words really hurt but I didn't want to take it personally.  His sin shouldn't offend it.  It offends God enough.  

I finally called Underdog to see when he might be coming home.  I felt such a need for reinforcements today.  Just about the time I got off the phone with him, the baby began to wiggle.  This was just any wiggling.  She's down low and every move of her pretty little head would send sharps pains down my legs and through my abdomen.  I had another one do this and the flashbacks began.  He started doing at this time in my pregnancy and he wasn't born until 41 weeks.  To add to all this, my hands, feet, and face are now stiff, burning, and itching.  This is where the cholestatis usually starts its run.

But in the midst of just feeling great despair I picked up my Bible and it just happen to open to 2 Corinthians 4.  The title of that section said "Treasures in a Jar."  I have heard of the idea that God collects our tears in a jar (not sure where that is found though) so I kept reading.  When I got the part about this monetary affliction by heart was struck.  This IS a momentary affliction.  I have been through all of this with 6 other babies.  They don't stay in there forever.  They do come out eventually.  When they do, there is such relief and peace.  No more discomfort.  No more being big.  It's momentary.  The great thing is that the Word is true when it says it's preparing me for an "eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison."  What we suffer on this earth is nothing compared to the richness of HIS glory is heaven.  What peace that should to all of us as we may suffer.  

God sees all that we experience.  In fact, His son experience a great deal of suffering in order that we could also experience His glory.  If we are called to be Christ-like then suffering should never be looked upon as a bad thing.  We are becoming more like Him.  I, for one, take great comfort in that.  It energizes me to keep going as I wait for His promise to deliver this child.  

(I want to make a small note here.  When I talk about suffering, at this point it's a physical suffering that is testing my resolve.  But I do not believe in anyway that I have experienced suffering in it's fullest form.  Although there can be persecution for American Christians, it's light compared to those that suffer around our world.  We are one of the richest nations in the world.  Most of us fall into the top 1% of wealth in the world.  Although a time is coming when our freedoms will be jeopardy, that times hasn't arrived.  The suffering of the church around the world makes our suffering and persecution seems as a joke.  Again, I am not saying we don't experience suffer.  Many are sick.  Many are hurting either in their hearts or physically.  But I believe we must keep our perspective.  If you want to know what the suffering church really looks like, look to the people in China.  Many of them are sitting in prison because they will not recant their faith.  Christians in Muslim countries are being murdered for their faith.  That is not suffering that we have ever experienced.  I don't want to make light of anything we experience.  God is Sovereign and all of us are in American by His grace.  We are comfortable yet suffer in the midst of that.  But we MUST keep our suffering in perspective.  If anything, knowing of the suffering of so many others should lead us to a place of gratitude that it isn't worse.)    

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